13 October 2021 – Jackson Gardens is an amenity grassland area in Denton, Greater Manchester, popular with dogwalkers. Working in partnership with military charity, Walking with the Wounded, 775 trees were planted in April 2021.
The objectives met for the site are:
- It extends and creates existing broadleaf woodland.
- It diversifies the tree and shrub species mix within the site.
- It continues to provide a greater seed and nectar source for local wildlife.
Summary of the project
The GM Tree and Woodland Strategy highlighted Jackson Gardens, Denton as a suitable location for tree planting to intercept PM 2.5 particulate matter (air pollution) due to its proximity to the M60 motorway.
The site was selected after consultation with Tameside Council and going forward will be managed by the Tameside Countryside Service, who also host Tameside Volunteer Group, one of the longest-running conversation groups in the country.
The key stages of the process were:
- Consulting with Tameside Council
- Designing a planting plan
- Species selection
- Preparing land for planting e.g. grass cutting
- Planting day with Walking with the Wounded
- Mulching the trees
The site equates to 1.6 gross hectares and 0.31 net hectares. 775 trees were planted in total with species planted including Common Oak, Alder, Bird Cherry, Crab Apple, Silver Birch and Rowan.
Jackson Gardens, Tameside
Employment and skills:
City of Trees worked with military charity Walking with the Wounded to provide employment for 13 ex-servicemen and women as part of a programme to build their employability skills.
Engagement, health and wellbeing:
Planting at Jackson Gardens is part of a wider project with Walking with the Wounded. As well as the physical benefits to the partnership, it has seen veterans from similar backgrounds come together, share experiences and open up. The project has seen veterans report marked improvements in their mental health and wellbeing, by learning new skills, meeting new people and connecting with nature.
“Working with the veterans has been great. They’ve all got stuck in and worked really hard to plant trees as the planting season draws to a close. We know that nature has huge benefits for our mental and physical health and I hope the veterans have benefited from the programme as we will all benefit from the trees that they’ve planted.”
– Kevin Wigley, Operations Manager, City of Trees